Category Archives: Miami Expungement Attorney

Reckless Driving in FLorida

Hochman Goldin BlogDriving recklessly is extremely dangerous but easy to get pulled into if you are not remaining vigilant and careful on the road. Tailgating, weaning in and out of traffic, and speeding are all considered reckless driving. If caught, there can be high penalties, depending on the outcome.

Florida defines reckless driving as any individual driving a vehicle in willful disregard for another person’s safety or property. Reckless driving is considered a misdemeanor in Florida and can land you jail time if the outcome is bad enough. Most charges include a $500 fine, up to 90 days in jail, or both. A second offense will cost these charges to double. If property damage was involved, or you caused injury, you will need a Miami traffic ticket lawyer because these charges are a third-degree offense. You will likely face a fine of $5,000 and up to 5 years in jail.

However, there is a difference between reckless and careless driving. While many get the term confused for one another, they cannot be used interchangeably. Careless driving is speeding, weaving in and out of traffic, tailgating, but does not include the “disregard” for others’ included in reckless driving. Essentially, they are unintentional accidents, but they can still wind up on your record. A Miami expungement attorney can help you dispute these charges if you feel they were given to you unnecessarily.

These charges are typically a fine from $160 to $500 and court costs. You will earn points on your license as well – most moving traffic violations are 3 points, but careless driving typically ends up in four points. You can also get a withhold of adjudication, which means the offense will not end up on your record. However, this is only available where there were no property damages or injuries to others and if it was the first offense.

What to Expect in Traffic Court

Hochman BlogIf you want to fight a traffic ticket, like speeding and running red lights, you may end up in court. You will not have a jury (these trials are referred to as bench trials), and while every case is different, you can expect a few universal things in Traffic Court.

Traffic court is quite different from criminal court, which typically is reserved for felonies and misdemeanors only. Minor traffic violations are considered crimes, but they are not handled like one in a courtroom. This type of court is usually less formal, and you may see people representing themselves. However, we recommend a Miami traffic ticket lawyer to help represent you if you end up in court. Since traffic violations are mostly minor infractions, people walk away with fines, not jail time.

Government evidence will be presented, which is more often than not the testimony of the officer who issued the ticket. The defendant is you, and the prosecutors are the state, but there are no prosecutors in some states. The defendant will get the chance to cross-examine the officer and ask their own questions, as well as present their own evidence that supports their case. Then, the judge will decide on whether the defendant is guilty or not.

If found guilty, you will have to pay fines and sometimes go to traffic school to correct the offense.

If your case was dismissed or you granted withheld adjudication, a Miami expungement attorney may be able to help your seal or expunge these charges, even for minor offenses such as traffic violations.

What SR-22 Insurance Means for Florida Drivers

Screen Shot 2021-05-07 at 4.51.19 PMIf you have been convicted of driving violations such as DUIs and driving without insurance, you may be required to purchase SR-22 or FR-44 insurance in order to reinstate your license.

SR-22 insurance is filing for proof of coverage, which your insurer will send to the state DMV to prove you have liability insurance as required by the state of Florida. This will cost exponentially more than other types of auto insurance. This is because you have been identified as a high-risk driver, or because you were required to obtain filing originally (in the case of driving without insurance).

FR-44 insurance is costly because of the severity of DUI convictions and higher liability insurance requirements.

If you’ve been deemed a high-risk driver by the state of Florida, your license may be suspended and you may be required to get SR-22 insurance to be able to drive legally again.

It’s important to note that this type of insurance is not separate auto insurance, but an insurance policy for automobiles and motorcycles that has an SR-22 endorsement attached. Due to this, you must purchase a policy that meets the state of Florida’s required insurance liability limits, and have the insurer submit an SR-22 for you.

This update is brought to you by the Miami traffic ticket lawyer team of Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and are ready to answer your questions. Please call 305-515-5284 to speak with a Miami Expungement Attorney today.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Florida Bills Seek Cameras for School Zones

road-192747_1920Earlier this month, South Florida lawmakers sought to gather more aid in backing House and Senate proposals (HB 357 and SB 1474). These bills are aimed at permitting local governments to implement traffic cameras in school zones.

The bills would penalize drivers that are snapped driving more than ten miles per hour over the school zone speed limit. Violators will be fined $132 by the House bill, with around half of the money designated for Florida’s general revenue fund. The city government will collect the brunt of the remaining money, with lesser percentages being given to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the school system, and some children’s hospitals.

If cars are photographed speeding into school zones, they will get traffic tickets, and the money received will be distributed in the same manner as the House bill.

While the bills may seem like a good cause, they aren’t being embraced without a bit of concern. Automated compliance, according to some civil rights organizations, may not be the best approach. Lawsuits against them are still pending in the courts. Red light, as well as speed cameras, are prohibited in ten different states. The use of these instruments is not addressed in any manner by Florida statute.

The aim is to protect children, not to give tickets or raise fines. Before any violations are given, counties and cities with these protection programs must notify their residents about the cameras and give alerts. Florida has long allowed cameras to catch pictures of drivers speeding through red lights, and politicians have evaluated repealing the law.

Should you have any questions about a citation, as your Miami traffic ticket lawyer we’re here to help you fight your ticket. Contact us today to discuss your case or if you need the services of a Miami expungement attorney.

Drivers With Expired Licenses May Have to Retest

elliot-kwan-KV57YBuoIe0-unsplash(1)Do you have an expired Florida driver’s license? Some recent changes in Florida law mean you’ll likely face a few additional hurdles when it comes to renewal. On February 1, Florida implemented a new law requiring drivers that have had their license expired for an extended period to retake a vision test and also complete the written portion of the driving exam before they will be allowed to renew.

A few examples of scenarios where retesting may be required include:

  • Drivers who have passed the awareness examination in Class E (the standard license type) but have yet to apply for issuance within one year of the exam date.
  • Drivers that have been demoted from a driver’s license to an ID card and the driver’s license expired for one or two years.
  • Drivers who have not applied during the one-year overdue renewal cycle to upgrade their driver’s license.

To prevent retest requirements, drivers should consider renewing early. The official Florida Driver’s Handbook can be downloaded by applicants who wish to prepare for the test.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

 

Make a Decision Regarding Your Traffic Ticket

road-car-driving-bike-asphalt-vehicle-284927-pxhere.comLet’s say that you ended up receiving a traffic ticket. You now have a thirty-day grace period of sorts to determine how you wish to address the ticket. You may decide to pay the fine and have points added to your license, you could attend traffic school and have the points removed, or you may decide to contest the ticket.

We encourage you to seek the assistance of a traffic ticket attorney to help fight the ticket but for purposes of this blog, let’s say that you did not make a decision within those thirty days. Should this happen, you may find yourself facing severe consequences. For example, you could have your license suspended, preventing you from legally operating a vehicle.

If you’re outside of the thirty-day grace period by a day or two, contact the clerk of court as soon as you can. You may be able to explain the situation and avoid license suspension as well as any extra fines that may be tacked on.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Florida Representative Wants Drivers to Go Fully Hands-Free

steering-wheel-801994_1920Texting while driving is now a primary offense but if a Florida representative has her way, motorists may eventually be required to go entirely hands-free while on the road. She recently introduced a bill expected to be evaluated during the 2021 legislative season that would make operating a vehicle while “manually holding” or touch wireless devices illegal.

The representative, whose sibling lost her life in a car accident, believes texting while driving was only “a start” and more needs to be done to ensure safer roadways while limiting distracted driving.

With texting while driving now being a primary offense, police have the authority to pull motorists over if caught. It was historically deemed a “secondary” offense, which meant that motorists could only be charged for texting while driving if they were pulled over for a different reason.

In designated school intersections, school zones and work zones, the statute also forbids motorists from making use of handheld devices. At the 2020 legislative session, the aforementioned representative introduced a bill for an entirely “hands-free” approach, but the measure did not clear all of the necessary hurdles.

Should the hands-free bill pass, Florida would become the 26th state to ban drivers from using handheld mobile phones while driving.

To read more, please visit https://www.orlandoweekly.com/Blogs/archives/2020/12/19/new-bill-would-require-florida-drivers-to-go-fully-hands-free-when-using-mobile-phones.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Watch Out for Holiday Season Road Rage

crazy-3607408_1920We caution people against drunk driving particularly at this time of year as more drivers are on the road to see families, attend holiday parties, or go holiday shopping. The holidays are when road rage cases tend to escalate. This is often why drivers need to brace themselves for slower flowing traffic.

But during this time of year, there’s another danger to motorists, one that most South Florida already deal with daily: road rage. Road rage may intensify and become expensive quickly: stealing your independence and causing your insurance rates to skyrocket. Even more serious, it could lead to the loss of life, whether yours or that of someone else.

During the holidays, law enforcement expects road rage as there are more persons on the road who are all struggling to make it from one point or another while dealing with more congestion. What is more, the pandemic is causing more people to choose vehicular travel versus using air travel. This means that when you do hit the road, you may wish to do so with the expectation that it may take a little longer to get where you’re going, especially if you’re heading to a place like a mall.

A citation for road rage may cause the insurance premiums to spike higher than if you were found driving drunk. Worse, your insurance providers may decide to cancel your policy and drop you altogether.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

Did you Receive a License Plate in the Mail?

license-plates-3614254_1920This year has been wild and full of ups and downs. As scams become more sophisticated, it’s worth being extra careful if something seems awry. For example, it may seem as if you randomly received a new license plate this year for no reason. You don’t recall making such a request, which may make you curious whether it’s legit.

You can rest assured that yes, the “random” license plate is indeed legit and is not a scam. You may not know this, but once you’ve been issued a license plate in your name, that plate will be replaced within ten years automatically. This replacement is not optional, it is not necessary to request it, nor does it come with extra fees attached. This may explain why its arrival in the mail may have appeared to be a random occurrence.

If you do have concerns about the license plate, or if you are certain it’s been fewer than ten years since you’ve had the plate, do not hesitate to contact a local tax collector to address any concerns.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.

DUI Checkpoints 101

drinking-3740477_1920It’s worth learning what you should do if you’ve never encountered a DUI checkpoint. You’re legally obliged to stop if asked. A police officer may request your license or they may require you to take a sobriety test if they believe you are under the influence.

DUI checkpoints, including the location and the date the checkpoint will occur, must be revealed to the public. To access this information, there are different applications or websites you can use. At the checkpoint, if the officer demands it because they suspect you might be drunk, you have the choice of refusing to perform the field examination. This test requires the usual standing, turning and walking, standing on a single leg, and the horizontal gaze test. However, if you reject this test, the rejection can be found suspect. An officer can then ask for a breathalyzer that holds immediate consequences if refused.

Should you have any DUI-related questions or if you wish to fight your traffic ticket, please contact us.

This update is brought to you by Miami traffic ticket lawyer Hochman & Goldin, P.A. We can assist you with criminal traffic violations and we are ready to answer your questions and help you fight your ticket. Please call 305-665-1000 to speak with a Miami expungement attorney.

This information is provided for educational or informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice.